Tasmania’s Brand Ambassadors
The Brand Tasmania Council appoints Brand Ambassadors to extend the strength and reach of its message. At present there are three and their profiles are below.
If you wish to familiarise yourself with their activities in the state follow this link.
Tetsuya Wakuda AO
A revered figure in the world of fine food: a brilliant chef and entrepreneur, Tetsuya Wakuda finds time in a busy life to deliver extraordinary service to Tasmania. The proprietor of Tetsuya’s in Sydney and Waku Ghin in Singapore, he has been an official Tasmanian Brand Ambassador since 2004, four years after first visiting the State to source ocean trout for his world-renowned signature dish, Confit of Tasmanian Ocean Trout. Tetsuya said he had discovered a ‘paradise of flavours’ and he has given passionately and unselfishly to the State’s promotion ever since.
Many local producers have benefitted from Tetsuya’s advice over the years. He has assisted with wasabi, cheese, abalone, oysters, onions, wagyu beef, grass-fed beef and lamb, walnuts, leatherwood honey, wine, olive oil and many other products. He has also made a significant contribution to the development of the State’s culinary expertise. Several of his former employees have taken leading roles in the recent gastronomic upsurge.
With two restaurants that have often been rated among the world’s best, Tetsuya has won many honours, including a Lifetime Achievement Award by Restaurant magazine, organiser of the annual Asia’s 50 Best Restaurants list, for his role on fusing the cooking traditions of Japan and France
His long-running recipe videos for Tasmanian wagyu beef, ocean trout and abalone continue to be hugely popular on Brand Tasmania’s YouTube channel. During 2015-16 they were the second, third and fourth most viewed videos.
Tetsuya views Tasmania’s brand as being “beyond organic”.
Ray Martin AM
Ray Martin, one of Australia’s most loved TV personalities and a five-time Gold Logie winner, accepted an invitation from the Premier, Will Hodgman, to take on a formal ambassador’s role in 2016. The newsman and TV host completed his secondary education at Launceston College. He has a deep love of the State and his voluminous contacts, access to privileged places and literary and photographic skills are valuable tools for Tasmania.
Even before his appointment, Mr Martin had given his time unselfishly and often to act as emcee at Brand Tasmania fund-raisers and networking events.
He is convinced Tasmania does not get the credit it deserves and considers it an honour to be a Brand Ambassador.
David Brill AM
David Brill covered his first big story as a cameraman in 1967, when bushfires raged through Hobart’s suburbs, killing 62 people and destroying 1,000 homes. His career took off after his bushfire footage was screened around the world. Brill’s courage and audacity earned him deep peer respect in Vietnam, Cambodia, El Salvador, Somalia, Serbia and other hotspots. He has always remained sensitive to the human stories enfolded in mighty events and this has made him one of Australia’s finest news cinematographers. Brill is a legend in his industry, both as cameraman and, more recently, video-journalist. He is a member of the Australian Cinematographers Hall of Fame and has a tremendous network of international contacts.
Born in northern Tasmania, Brill studied photography and cinematography at a commercial studio in Hobart from 1964-66, before landing his life-changing job as a trainee cameraman at the ABC’s Hobart bureau.
A proud Tasmanian, Brill has worked to keep alive the story of another heroic Tasmanian – cameraman, Neil Davis.
Famously, Brill had a brass plate attached to a villa he occupied in Hanoi in the 1970s. It read: ‘Ambassador to Tasmania’.
Facts and figures
- ‘Tasmania’s food and beverage brand is beyond organic,’ Tetsuya Wakuda pronounced in 2015.
- David Brill’s extraordinary life is recorded in a biography, The Man Who Saw Too Much, by John Little.
- Ray Martin discovered in the 1990s that he was a descendent of the Kamilaroi people of north-west NSW. In 2016, he hosted the SBS series First Contact.
- The Sydney restaurant Tetsuya’s was rated among the World’s 50 Best Restaurants in every year between 2004 and 2012.
- David Brill’s Vietnam coverage won an international Thorn-EMI Award.